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Vernon Coleman (born 18 May 1946) is an English self-published author, columnist and former general practitioner. He has written over 100 books, including works about human health, politics, cricket, and animal issues, and a range of novels.
In 1994 Coleman was given a restraining order and ordered to pay compensation for threatening Sir Colin Blakemore. Coleman has been censured by the Press Complaints Commission and banned by the Advertising Standards Authority.
His books have appeared on several bestseller lists, including The Sunday Times. Life Without Tranquillisers reached the Top Ten of The Sunday Times in March 1985. His book Bodypower reached several bestseller lists in the UK.
Coleman was born in 1946, the son of an electrical engineer. He grew up an only child, in Walsall, West Midlands, England, where he attended Queen Mary's Grammar School.
As a child he was unsure what he wanted to do, but then, according to The Independent in 2008, he said he "met a friend of the family when I was about 12 who said, if you're a lawyer you spend your life making people unhappy, and if you're a doctor you spend your life trying to make people happy."
Before going to medical school, Coleman worked between 1964 and 1965 as a CSV volunteer in Kirkby, Liverpool, getting children to paint old people's houses and doing their shopping. According to Coleman, "The unions threatened to strike, as they were taking away work, but...work that they weren't doing anyway..."
Coleman qualified as a doctor in 1970 and worked as a GP. He is no longer registered and licensed to practise as a GP principal having relinquished registration. An anti-vivisectionist, he has been a witness at the House of Lords on vivisection.
Writing and media appearances
A 1989 editorial in the British Medical Journal criticised his comments on leprosy after it was announced that Diana, Princess of Wales was to shake hands with a leper. The incident was covered on Channel 4's Hard News, but Coleman declined to appear unless paid a fee because of travel costs.
How to Stop Your Doctor Killing You came out in 1996, and then again in 2003.
After publishers refused to publish Alice's Diary and certain other of his books, he decided to begin self-publishing.
He has also written under the pen name Edward Vernon. In the late 70s, he wrote 3 novels about life as a GP: Practice makes Perfect, Practise What you Preach and Getting into Practice. Coleman (who uses a number of other pen names) says that the books are novels and not autobiographical and that the pen name was used on the advice of his literary agent for purely practical reasons.
In 2005 the Advertising Standards Authority responded to an advertisement for a book by Vernon Coleman that read "The person most likely to kill you is not a burglar, a mugger, a deranged relative or a drunken driver. The person most likely to kill you is your doctor. This book explains how to protect yourself from this serious threat to your life and good health.". The advertisement was for his book "How To Stop Your Doctor Killing You". Complainants, including a general medical practitioner challenged whether the advertisement was misleading, particularly the claim "The person most likely to kill you is your doctor" were misleading, offensive and denigratory to the medical profession. The advertisers believed that the claim did not breach the CAP code and that the claim was fair. Coleman claimed that doctors were one of the four most common causes of death though precise figures were not available. He claimed that he was trying to help vulnerable people and that the book was honest and helpful. The ASA considered that the advert was likely to offend and denigrate the medical profession and told the advertisers to revise the advert with advice from the CAP Copy Advice team.
The Advertising Standards authority found that the quote "The person most likely to kill you is not a burglar, a mugger, a deranged relative or a drunken driver. The person most likely to kill you is your doctor. This book explains how to protect yourself from this serious threat to your life and good health" was misleading because the advertisers had provided no evidence to substantiate it. The ASA noted Colemans' comments that the book was designed to help vulnerable people but considered that claims such as "Ten reasons why you shouldn't trust your doctor" were irresponsible because they would discourage people from seeking essential medical help. The ASA told the advertisers not to repeat the claims and to consult the CAP Copy Advice team for assistance with future advertising.
The Advertising Standards Authority found that he had made misleading claims about the link between food and cancer.
Coleman is married to Donna Antoinette Coleman (born 1972), a co-author with him of How To Conquer Health Problems Between Ages 50 and 120 (2003), and Health Secrets Doctors Share With Their Families (2005). He is a vegan and a transvestite.
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- The Medicine Men (1975)
- Paper Doctors (1976)
- Stress Control (1978)
- Tunnel (1980)
- The Good Medicine Guide (1982)
- Bodypower (1983)
- Thomas Winsden's Cricketing Almanac (1983)
- Bodysense (1984)
- Life Without Tranquillisers (1985)
- Mindpower (1986)
- Know Yourself (1988)
- Alice's Diary (1989)
- Village Cricket Tour (1990)
- Eat Green Lose Weight (1990)
- Why Animal Experiments Must Stop (1991)
- Alice's Adventures(1992)
- Bilbury Chronicles (1992)
- Mrs Caldicot's Cabbage War (1993)
- Betrayal of Trust (1994)
- Food for Thought (1994, 2000)
- The Man Who Inherited a Golf Course (1995)
- How to Stop Your Doctor Killing You (1996, new edn 2003)
- Paris in My Springtime (2002)
- How To Conquer Health Problems Between Ages 50 and 120 (2003, with Donna Antoinette Coleman)
- Rogue Nation (2003)
- Confronting The Global Bully (2004)
- Health Secrets Doctors Share With Their Families (2005, with Donna Antoinette Coleman)
- Too Many Clubs and Not Enough Balls (2005)
- Animal Experiments Simple Truths (2006)
- How to Protect and Preserve Your Freedom, Identity and Privacy (2006)
- Gordon is a Moron: the Definitive and Objective Analysis of Gordon Brown's Decade as Chancellor of the Exchequer (2007)
- Coleman's Laws (2007)
- Oil Apocalypse (2007)
- Mr Henry Mulligan (2007)
- The OFPIS File (2008)
- Cat Tales (2008)
- What Happens Next? (2009)
- Moneypower (2009)
- Bloodless Revolution (2009)
- 101 Things I Have Learned (2010)
- 100 Greatest Englishmen and Englishwomen (#2010)
- 2020 (2010)
- Anyone Who Tells You Vaccines Are Safe And Effective Is Lying. Here's The Proof. (2011)
- Diary of a Disgruntled Man (2011)
- Do Doctors And Nurses Kill More People Than Cancer? (2011)
- Stuffed (2012)
- The Truth Kills (2014)
- Is this what really happened (2014)
- Just another bloody year (2014)
- Bugger off and leave me alone (2015)
- Doctor in Paris (2015)
- Balancing the Books (2015)
- Stories with a Twist (2015)
- One thing after Another (2015)
- Psychiatry (2015)
- Are You Living with a Psychopath?: The 39 simple ways you can diagnose a psychopath (2015)
- Cheese rolling (2015)
- Bilbury Tonic (2016)
- Return of the Disgruntled man (2016)
- Millions of Alzheimer Patients (2016)
- Bilbury Relish (2016)
- Life on the Edge (2017)
- Bilbury Mixture (2017)
- Bilbury Delights (2017)
- Bilbury Joys (2017)
- Climbing Trees at 112 (2017)
- Is Your Health Written in the Stars? (2017)
- Kick-Ass A-Z for Over 60s (2017)
- The Game's Afoot (2018)
- Mrs Caldicot's Oyster Parade (2018)
- Briefs Encounter (2018)
- Bilbury Tales (2018)
- Bilbury Days (2018)
- Mrs Caldicot's Turkish Delight (2018)
- Bilbury Memories (2018)
- Tickety Tonk (2019)
- The Benzos Story (2019)
- The Shocking History of the EU (2019)
- Dementia Myth (2019)
- Dr Bullock's Annals (2020)
- "The doctor will see you now: Who does Vernon Coleman think he is?". Archived from the original on 15 May 2008. Retrieved 23 August 2019.
- "Vernon Coleman". Tower Hill Stables. Retrieved 25 December 2013.
- 'Conscientious Objectors', "Financial Times" 8 August 2003
- "Animal rights man restrained". Guardian. 3 August 1994.
- Schoon, Nicholas (3 August 1994). "Scientist wins right to keep address secret: Professor hounded by anti-vivisectionists wins court battle with journalist". The Independent. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
- "What seems to be the problem Doctor Coleman?". The Independent. 12 July 1999. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
- Sunday Times 24 March 1985
- Top Ten Sunday Times, 3 April 1983
- Top Ten Bookseller 16 April 1983
- "Mrs Caldicot's Cabbage War". IMDB. Retrieved 25 December 2013.
- Johnson, Rachel (6 March 2004). "You have been warned, Mr Blair". www.spectator.co.uk. Retrieved 24 March 2020.
- 'Bumbledom forced me to leave the NHS', "Pulse" 28 November 1981
- 'Volunteer for Kirkby', The Guardian, 14 May 1965
- "The medical register". GMC List of registered medical practitioners. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
- "Supplementary memorandum by Professor Vernon Coleman". www.parliament.uk. Retrieved 22 January 2020.
- "Medicine and the Media". BMJ. 299 (6706): 1036. 21 October 1989. doi:10.1136/bmj.299.6706.1036. ISSN 0959-8138.
- `You have been warned, Mr Blair.' Spectator, 6 March 2004 and 20 March 2004
- Tickety Tonk (Vernon Coleman's Diaries), Blue Books, 2019
- The Morning Show with Patrick Timpone, 31 January 2017
- "ASA Non-broadcast Adjudication: Publishing House". Advertising Standards Authority. 22 June 2005. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
- "Books and publications". www.asa.org.uk. Advertising Standards Authority Committee of Advertising Practice. 22 July 2013. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
- Mrs Caldicot's Knickerbocker Glory, 2014, page 1
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